Blind No More?

FDA has given biotech company Advanced Cell Technology the go-ahead to test a treatment for macular degeneration using human embryonic stem cells in a clinical trial, says Jennifer Welsh at the 80beats blog. Researchers at Advanced Cell Technology suggest that implanting hESCs in these patients could end retinal pigment epithelial cell death and reverse blindness; using this approach, the team saw improved vision in rats, Welsh says.

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An Australian-led team has generated a draft genome assembly of the invasive cane toad in hopes it will help in population control, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.

The New York Times reports that the US Department of Defense has implemented about half the recommendations made to improve safe handling of dangerous agents.

In PLOS this week: approach for teasing out archaic introgression in human genomes, immune transcription features in HCV infection, and more.

Stat News reports that Maryland is promoting itself to the biotech industry with a mobile billboard.